Compensation: Industrial Diseases
Jim Cunningham (PPS (Mr Mike O'Brien, Minister of State), Department for Work and Pensions; Coventry South, Labour)
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what steps the Government has taken to ensure Coal Health Compensation Schemes are being effectively dealt with.
Malcolm Wicks (Minister of State (Energy), Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform; Croydon North, Labour)
I have been asked to reply.
The Department negotiated Claims Handling Agreements (CHAs) for each of the Coal Health Compensation Schemes with the groups representing claimants' solicitors. These set out in detail how claims will be processed. They also provide for solicitors costs of successful claims to be met by the Department to ensure claimants are legally represented.
The Department also has in place detailed audit procedures to ensure that all its contractors comply with the procedures set down under the CHAs for the Coal Health Compensation Schemes.
With regard to individual offers, claimant representatives have access to all of the Department's calculators and are able to confirm the offer made.
There are also dispute procedures in place should the representative or client wish to query the amount.
The CHAs can be viewed on the Department's website: